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How to make travel fun for people with cerebral palsy

The holiday season is approaching and people are busy making plans. You might have a family member or friend with cerebral palsy who is also going to be part of the trip. Hence, you have to consider a few things while planning out the trip. Newzhook spoke to a few travel lovers about how to make the travel experience easy and enjoyable.

Road trips are always fun. Since you decide the stops for breaks and time of arrival at destination, timings are flexible. If you plan to fly down, consult the airlines beforehand to know what facilities they offer to a person with cerebral palsy. Trains are usually accessible. But it is best to check on how to avail facilities.

Jasmina Khanna is a person with cerebral palsy and an ardent traveller. She makes sure that she takes her time out to go for vacation.

Travelling can get hectic and your body can take a toll on you. So try and take some rest whenever possible. You must keep a watch on what and how much you eat and drink so that you don't feel like rushing to a washroom every time. When we travel, we come across very few accessible washrooms. We just have to keep these few tips in mind and just enjoy your vacation- Jasmina Khanna.

Check out these tips that can make travelling easy and fun with a person who has cerebral palsy.

  • Plan in advance - Undoubtedly, this is the first step to a successful vacation. You must plan your trip at least a month in advance. You can to research on accessible and disabled friendly tourist spots at your destination. For instance, if you are planning on a road trip, ensure that your destination is not a steep and hilly terrain. Most of the people with cerebral palsy are wheelchair users. Bad roads can take a toll on their health. It can also be very tiring. In case you would like to visit a hill station, look out for other options or maybe fly down to the place!
  • Prepare medicines and label them correctly - A person with cerebral palsy will have regular medications. When you travel with family, there will be a lot of bags. That means a lot of confusion too! A person with cerebral palsy will find it difficult to check through each bag for their medicines. So always keep medicines handy. Keep them in a separate bag which can be easily accessed. Screening medicines at airports are also a tedious task, especially when you pass security checks. To make things smoother, inform your airline beforehand. They will help you handle it with ease.
  • Do short practice trips - This is mainly applicable to children with cerebral palsy. Most of the children refrain from travelling long distances in cars. Hence, taking a road trip or sitting in the flight for long hours can be tiresome for them. In order to avoid this, try and do short trips in your car in your locality. This way, a person with mobility problems can get used to spending longer time inside the car.
  • Stop for breaks - Chances are high that a person with cerebral palsy gets tired fast. Hence, make regular pit stops. The person will get some rest from the road and will also be able to go to washroom or have some snacks. It will energize them and make them feel better.

Chitra Shah is the founder of Satya Special School that empowers disabled children. This inclusive school is located at Pondicherry.

"People with cerebral palsy, especially children, do not like to travel on bumpy roads. It can annoy or irritate them. So try and avoid such routes as much as possible. If you plan to travel by train, it is always best to give them a warning of what all they can expect. The loud honking sound of trains can actually give them seizures. Inform your co-passengers about the condition of your child as well. Things like stopping for intervals, ensuring medicines are handy and drinking water needs no special mention", says Chitra.

So, go ahead and make your plans and tell us how it went!

ALSO READ: Befriending a person with cerebral palsy? Check out these tips

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